DIY, Watercolor Tutorials

Tutorial: Watercolor Geometric Heart

I always love a homemade gift. Like, I really love love them. It’s more than just the gift, ya know? Most of us barely have time to wash our hair regularly so when someone takes the time and energy to make something especially for me it makes me feel like I’m really something special.

While making and distributing beautifully packaged cookies is an excellent way to make people feel like the bees knees, sometimes we need something with a little bit of a longer shelf life..can you guess what I’m talking about? YOU NAILED IT – home made cards (with thoughtful and affirming words inside)! It’s the type of thing people stick on their fridge and don’t take it down for years. No pressure though…. 🙂

Today’s tutorial is on painting a geometric heart (it’s really kind of a gemstone heart but I didn’t like how that sounded..) It can be used to make beautiful cards for any occasion (or even wall art for your home or as a gift!). Below I have a printable that is the basic structure for the heart. Go ahead and click the button and print it out. For the purposes of this tutorial I will be focusing on making cards but feel free to blow the template image up to any size if you want to use it for wall art instead. Because it’s February I went with red/purple hues but any colors would and be beautiful – just make sure they blend well so you don’t end up with a muddy heart!

1- Pick 2-4 colors that will blend well on the page. I used 3 different red hues (cadmium red medium, alizarin crimson, rose dore) and a purple (quinacridone violet). You’re also going to want a small-ish brush with a nice and pointy tip; I used a size 3 round.

  • Remember the color wheel? Pick colors that are next to each other and you can’t go wrong.

2- Trace heart template onto watercolor paper – this can be done placing the papers against a well lit window, or against a lightbox if you happen to have one. Don’t have a printer? You could actually even hold the paper up against your computer screen and trace it without even printing it!

  • For a standard A2 size card, prior to tracing heart, cut paper to a 5.5″x 8.5″ and fold in half along the long side (hamburger style).
  • If you would like to leave room to write words underneath position the top of the heart about 1/2″ from the top of the card
  • If you want to paint wall art – feel free to blow up the image to the size you want and print.

3- You want to paint each section of the heart individually, leave just a small white space between each one – let the pencil lines guide you in this. Allow water/paint to go almost to the pencil lines without touching them. Remember, paint only goes where theres water.

  • First paint alternating sections so that it can dry before painting the adjacent space. This minimizes the chance of them blobbing together if they accidentally touch (although accidental touches are inevitable and give character so don’t stress 🙂  ).
  • Begin with the center section. First dampen with plain water, then paint the top left portion with one of the reds, the bottom left portion with another red and then use plain water to blend allowing the right side to remain light.

4- Moving on to the outside sections; you want the stone to look like it is reflecting light and the colors around it. The easiest way to go about this is to start with one color and paint one side of the section, grab a different color (or hue) and paint the other side and then blend with plain water. You can also paint part of a section with paint and the other part with plain water and let it gradually blend. Continue until heart is fully painted.


  • Should you want to make a portion of a section darker after it has been painted (but is still wet), just dab a little bit more color in a corner and let it spread.
  • If a section gets darker than you would like, just dab a paper towel on the wet paint to lift it up and lighten it. (see below)

5- Write in words if you choose. Below I have some ideas for Valentine’s day!

Valentines Day Wording Ideas:

I Choose You
You’re Mine
You’re Pretty
I Like Your Face
You’re A Gem

6- let everything dry, erase pencil lines, and you’re done! Be overly cautious in waiting for it to dry, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been impatient and smudged my work!


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